Victorian silver child's cup

Victorian silver child's cup


This charming antique silver christening cup has a panelled body with each panel finely hand-engraved with alternating figures and floral swags. Shell and scroll motifs decorate the body of the cup and feature in the cast foot. The leaf-topped scroll handle is decorated with a bead pattern that mirrors beading on the foot. The front panel is left plain to accommodate a personal engraving or inscription. Inside the cup is a gold-plated finish.

An ever-popular christening gift, children's silver mugs have been around for several centuries. A lidless drinking vessel with a handle, a silver child's mug was traditionally used for serving hot drinks. Silver was the preferred material because it kept the drink hot and did not taint its taste.

Although mugs have been made in a range of graduated sizes (gill, half-pint, pint and quart being the most popular), small mugs were made specifically for children. Some 18th century boarding schools listed a mug as a mandatory item that a boy should take to school.

By the mid-19th century, ornate Victorian silver child's mugs like this example emerged featuring exuberant floral and foliate decoration, elaborate engraving sometimes referencing nursery rhymes or traditional fables, and later the inclusion of gothic style cues too.

Although Art Nouveau and Art Deco silver children's mugs can be found, most made in the 20th century are recreations of popular styles of the past.


Height 120 mm / 4 34"
Diameter 75 mm / 3 14"
Weight 184 g (5.92 troy ozs)